Request Information on Graphic Cards


Jul 14, 2003

After searching the forums I've decided to go ahead and make a post. I have the money to purchase a new graphics card. Any card I want basically.

I use my systems for work and play. For work I terminal serve into another Win2k3 and install all my work junk there.

Locally I have the following hardware. No other work software is installed. Just games... :)

1.0gig RAM
2x40 ATA100/7200 RPM Drives
Athlon 1800+@1.65 GHz
GFX 2 w/32mb shared memory (On board graphics)
VooDoo 3000 PCI w/16 mb.
Windows XP
I don't play many games, however I do play the following;

1. FS2002/2004 <- pretty much the reason why I'm getting a new card.

2. Morrowind

3. Ultima IX

4. Falcon 4.0 SP3

5. Atari ST emulator for all those old, neat, and nostalgic games.

Ultima and Falcon aren't very graphic intensive and will work fine with the onboard AGP, however I want to get the best performance for Morrowind and FS2k4.

I'm looking at the 9800 and 5900. I'll be doing more reseach before I make a decision. Can someone tell me the following;

1. Are there any diffrence in the 128 and 256 versions besides the memory?

2. I've heard that nVidia and Microsoft are in bed together. Is this true?

3. Does the 9800 provide Multi-Monitor support?

4. Does having a 4X board decrease the performance of an 8X card?

5. Is there any way to find out what burdens the GPU and what burdens the CPU when it comes to games? (Pretty tough question I guess).

Thanks for any help.



1. Not really. 256 MB is more of a marketing tool than anything else. Games won't be taking advantage of that amount of texture memory for at least a year. (It won't even show an advantage in Doom3)

2. Not really. Ati worked with Microsoft on DirectX 9.

3. Yes, and very well.

4. A very small amount. less than 5%, and only at very high resolutions.

5. Use of lots of complex shaders are tough on the GPU. CPU is usually a bottleneck of older games that run superfast, like DirectX 7 class stuff (Quake3, etc.)

Radeon 9500 w/256 bit memory bus @ 367/310
AMD AthlonXP 2000+
3dMark03: 3439